Why do Narcissists abuse the ones they love

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

How Narcissists think

The biggest reason many people fail to understand why Narcissists abuse the ones they love is that they don't truly understand how Narcissists think.

In my previous article Can a Narcissist fall in love i said that Narcissists think of love in a totally different way than the way a normal person thinks of love.

The major differences between the belief system of normal people and Narcissists make the later group totally puzzling for those who want to understand them.

Before you can understand why Narcissists abuse the ones they love you have to first know how Narcissists think. In my previous article The Narcissist, the Over Confident and the Inferior i said that Narcissists have an exaggerated sense of self importance.

This exaggerated sense of self importance is directly connected to the Narcissists desire to become superior and to show the world that they are superior.

The problem happens when this image Narcissists are trying to create gets challenged in any possible way. In such a case Narcissists go lengths to defend this image and this includes becoming abusive and overly agressive.

Why do Narcissists abuse the ones they love

Now that you have a basic idea about how Narcissists think it's time to understand why they abuse others including the people they love:

  • 1) They are protecting their own image: A Narcissist will do anything to protect their image of superiority including abusing the ones they love the most. If you challenged a Narcissist, made them think they are not superior or criticized them in a way that they didn't like then they are very likely to respond back in an abusive manner. See Why are narcissists so dangerous
  • 2) The shift between idolizing and devaluing: Narcissists shift between idolizing and devaluing the ones they love and this is a pattern that many people don't understand. Narcissists think in terms of zeros and ones. For a Narcissist you are either a worthless zero or a valuable one. If you pissed off the Narcissist in a way that affected their Ego then they might consider you a zero for sometime. Shortly after the problem is solved the Narcissist can consider you a one again and this is why Narcissists can shift between being normal and abusive all of a sudden. See Why Narcissists hate you
  • 3) They hate to be challenged: Narcissists hate it when someone questions their authority or challenges their ego. Narcissists can become extremely aggressive as soon as they feel that someone is trying to do that to them. The problem here is that a typical Narcissist can react aggressively based on their own flawed perception. In such a case you might suddenly find the Narcissist being abusive without understanding why they are doing so. See How narcissists manipulate you
  • 4) They can lack empathy: Most people believe that Narcissists lack empathy but that's only partially true. A typical Narcissist can shift between phases of empathy to phases of total lack of empathy. Once the Narcissist believes that their ego is under attack they can lose empathy for people and become extremely abusive. See Why narcissists don't give closure
  • 5) They are highly manipulative: Narcissists can be highly manipulative. They might use whatever methods they can use to force others to abide to their own rules and values. Those methods could include shaming someone, humiliating them and making them feel totally worthless. Narcissists use those devaluation methods all the time to achieve their objectives and goals and this is one reason they can be very abusive. See also How to control a narcissist
  • 6) Their love is different: Narcissists can be very materialistic. For them love can be just accepting to choose you from among their fans and that's it. The values of giving or caring for others might be totally nonexistent for a Narcissist since they are very self centered individuals. While the Narcissist won't believe that they are doing anything wrong others will be seeing them as highly abusive people. See also How to make a narcissist want you

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